Charter Oak faces reality: “We can do it one week, but we can’t do it week in and week out,” says coach Lou Farrar

By Aram Tolegian, staff writer
For the second straight season, Charter Oak was eliminated from the Inland Division playoffs by a Baseline League team.

Last season, Upland did the honors. This season, it was Rancho Cucamonga by a score of 23-7.

Charter Oak finished 10-2 for the second consecutive season, but the sense that there’s a ceiling on just how far the Chargers can go in the rugged Inland Division is becoming reality.

“We can do it one week, but we can’t do it week in and week out,” Charter Oak coach Lou Farrar said. “The physical pounding and preparation are really difficult. My kids gave me everything they had. They left it all out on the field.”

Last season, the case can be made that Farrar had his best offense ever, led by quarterback Travis Santiago, running back Kurt Scoby and two next-level receivers in Chris Gilchrist and Bryce Bobo.

This season, the case can be made that Farrar has his best defense ever, a unit that allowed just 11.5 points per game. But the results were the same – the Chargers were sent packing in the second round.

“Here’s the deal, I thought about that after the game Friday and now three or four days of thought,” Farrar said. “Personnel-wise, if I could take the best players we’ve had for the last three years and put them on the same team, then I’ve got a chance to go to the third round, or the fourth.

“If I took the last three years and put all our kids on one team, I would look like Rancho Cucamonga. The point is, Rancho Cucamonga just had more players in more positions than we did. I don’t know if we can reach those levels.”

— Aram Tolegian

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  • Montview

    To CO & Farrar,

    Farrar & CO now know how it feels to be the Montview League season in and season out at our level!!!! Welcome to our world CO!!! Enjoy the stay!!!

  • Lance R

    Coaching is huge, Farr has done a great job at C.O. with the talent he gets. When they stepped them up to play the likes of the Inland Empire they become a one and done in the playoffs or thereabouts. The same can be said about our Lancers we compete in the Serra and have sniffed the playoffs in this Hagerty era but a Championship or semi-final does not come easy for Amat or C.O. if you do not have the horses. Talent is everything at this level of competition, as I said before unless Amat goes out and recruits top notch lineman and skilled position players in and around the SGV they like CO are stepping stones for other more talented teams when it comes to the playoffs. It is what it is until both teams start to recruit a little more aggressively. When you can get a o-line that are all 6’2″ 230 pounds and over then and only then do have a chance to form a team that can challenge…. 5’9″ 200 pound lineman are not going to get it done. Amat runs a play called the beef down at the goal line or in short yardage situations but really you need the beef throughout the game to move the chains. Time to get bigger if you want to compete at this high level.

  • Lance R

    This is from a friend of mine that knows Harry Welch when he was at Canyon High. Harry uses his recruiting technique to the fullest by announcing during the offseason a weightlifting competition to all kids, not just the ones that attend the high school where he coaches. Kids show up in the numbers and of course the big heavyweight guys come that can really lift some heavy weights. There is where Harry Welch views all the big talented guys from around his area and then recruits them based on size. It’s a very good idea and he gets around the violation of recruiting. Amat and CO should take a page out of Harry’s book, this guys does not go from Canyon to St. Margarets to Santa Margarita and make them champions just like that. He has a recruiting system that has worked for him for years and as you can see it works. This coach is successful where ever he goes.

  • jcaz

    I think that this is one of the biggest reasons as to why I have respected this man so much over the years. His honest and candor is unmatched by anyone in this valley.
    It is difficult sometimes to perform a task, knowing that in the end, all that you strive to accomplish will ultimately, lead to failure.
    I for one know that feeling all to well, and frankly, the word that LANCE R says in here, i could not agree with more.
    His point that schools such as Amat and Charter Oak need to recruit better, in order to preform at their respective levels, is a valid one.
    When I came on here at the end of our season and made my point clear, it seems to me that every one was using excuses as to why Amat was always getting beaten every year in the playoffs.
    The fact is that there are many ways to solve these issues, but if you are gong to want to compete at this level and are not willing to work at it (in the way Lance R says, or in the way I outlined earlier), then really, what are you doing then ?
    I just wish that our coaching staff were as candid and straight forward as has been coach Farrar over the years.

    Maybe they could learn a lesson or two from this man

    • AMAT 73

      So Jcaz , you would rather Hags say we can’t win here and we don’t belong in the PAC 5 please drop us like Big Lou ??????.If that’s the case them he’s the wrong coach for AMAT Lance R is correct on needing to get bigger on both lines . I believe at the other positions QB , DB ,WR ,RB ,we are solid and have the tools needed to compete .By the way Lance R never mentioned dropping down . Look around the PAC 5 and we are defintely not a team to be moved out . Worst part is you argue with a fool with 3-4 years of PAC 5 football, and he knows it all . Yea just like he knew Alemany would romp on Mater Dei , guess they over looked MD like they did Crespi . But in the end how does he judge his team’s accomplishments , by what AMAT did in the season .

      • warrior fan

        It takes a real man to admit when he’s in over his head. And it also takes a dummy to believe that they still belong on a level whereas you cant even get in the playoffs outright or hasnt made it past the second round in over a decade and just barely making it to the second round once in half a decade. The proof is in the pudding, or CROW PIE AMAT EATS.

      • jcaz

        At the end of the season, I sat down a wrote, as someone in here said, (LOL), a “war and piece” essay about how I felt about the situation. I never said that we “SHOULD” drop out of the PAC 5 but that perhaps it was as good a time as any to take a good look at many of reasons as to why it is that we always seem to falter when it comes to having success beyond the regular season.
        As I said earlier, the coach isn’t the one who suits up to play every Friday night. Its up to the kids to perform as best they can, and truth be told, if Lienheart hadn’t gotten that ball striped out of his hands, and if Rio hadn’t fumbled the ball at the one yard line, then we probably would be talking about a couple of Amt teams that most likely would have gone beyond the first round (maybe even further).
        But the facts are that no matter how you paint it, Amat loses and that’s because this leadership group (whom ever you want to point the finger at, weather is the administration or the coaching staff) isnt ready to do what is necessary to win a championship.
        Lancer R makes some damn good points, and to an extent, so does Aram. However, with Aram, I sometimes think he has a chip on his shoulders. Ha ha JK Aram…
        As for Warrior Fan, OMG, that guy is just looking for any reason so come on here and talk poop. He’s a fool, but sometimes even fools speak with a measure of truth. You dont HAVE to be hommer all the time 73. because when they bang on us, sometimes some of those arguments have some merit.
        Look, lets be honest here. Amat wont do what other schools do. Earlier this year, they refused to bring in Scooby, and as one guy in here said, they probably dont give out any financial incentives that the other parochial schools do. Yet they try to compete in a division where they they know they will never win. WTF ???
        Look 73, you dont bring a knife to a gun fight, and if schools like Alemany are cheating (by bringing in kids form Pasadena in some nefarious way), then how are you going to beat that ?
        You know, I guess what gets me so upset, is that they never tell us the truth. Heck one year we even had Hag’s in here saying he felt he was going to win the PAC5. Fred got it on tape !!
        Maybe they should all take a lesson from coach Farrar. Never mind that I have good friends over there, because like I said, his honesty is head and shoulders over what ive seen so far, and that’s why ive always respected this man

        • fb101

          What EXACTLY is CO Farrar ‘honest’ about? Is it honesty or reality on his part?

          CO is NOT getting the same TYPE of kids he had been, i.e. transfers/players from out of area or enough of them to compete in the inland. TOO bad. IF he was THAT good of a coach like Hags, he’d be getting the most out of his teams and not LOSING to Amat.

          • jcaz

            You are confused here my good friend. First of all, lets both be honest and at the same time candid.

            Fair ?
            Ok, let’s begin with the points ive made, and then lets look at what your saying.
            First of all, I respect any man who will tell the truth, no matter how much that truth may hurt. is that a fair statement to say ? One that you might agree with correct ? Ok, Farrar is a man who tells the truth.

            Hes not saying that hes going to go out there and win a championship. But what he is saying is that, while his teams can compete, there is a reality and that reality is that his program is “most likely” not on par with what hes up against week in and week out.
            When you say for example, that hes not getting the “type of kids he had” then tell me how much different is that from where Amat is currently at ?

            When you disrespect a man by saying hes not as good as another, then your not using logic, your acting foolish. Please dont disrespect this man.

            Farrar is not out there saying the things his “constituents” are wanting to hear. He is telling the truth. The difference here is that the staff over at Amat are not,and BTW, you right, Charter oak is not Amat. We expect to win, but at the same time, Amat will never win if they dont wish to make the commitment it takes. Especially at this level.
            What makes me angry, is that there is no commitment to win. it simply a lie, and it stinks really bad

          • fb101

            Farrar is WHINING. Woe is me…..blah, blah, blah.

            One NEVER hears, in-season, off-season, Hag’s saying Amat can’t win for ANY reason….The guy and his staff NEVER quit.

            Let me ask YOU this:

            How would Hag’s and staff do with the talent that CO has in the same division? How would Farrar do at Amat with the talent Amat has in PAC-5 play?

          • jcaz

            You know something, believe it or not, I kinda like that question. it's a fair question to ask, so let's play with that for just one minute ok. Obviously, Of course, there is no way to do this reslisticly, but if we were to look at just the simple numbers, then maybe we'd have something to work with no ??? So, in the time that coach Hags has been at Amat, what exactly has he done ? Really ???
            Ok, he got Amat into the playoffs, which btw, is an expectation, is it not ? Now, in that same time frame, tell me how many banners has he put over on the rafters in our Gym ? Ok, so far so good, so let's take this one step beyond that shall we ? Over that same time frame, how many times has Hagardy, actually practiced during the thanksgiving holiday ? Kinda get where I'm going with this aren't you ?
            Now, i dont know about you, but if you want to sit here and talk poop about this man and sit here and talk about accomplishments, I for one wouldn't really want to go there on this question.

          • warrior fan

            What makes Hags such a great coach? I mean you talk down on coach Lou who has won recently and has made it further then Hags has and is in an equal division. So i ask you what makes hags better?

          • fb101


            You still here? Why don’t you go find Herrington a defense?

            What makes him great?

            Hags and staff ALWAYS has his team PREPARED, kicked the snot outta CO.

            NEVER whines when he’s dealing with tough opponents, just figures out a way to compete and NEVER gives up.

          • warrior fan

            See FB101 its numb skulls like you that doesnt make any sense. Look dude you say go find harrington a defense. Well our defense was good enough to DESTROY your team but yet we need a defense. Also i can say the same about your team every game you guys lost the team averaged 40+ points and a margin of victory of 21+ points. The difference between us and you is that when we lost we BARELY lost but a lost is a lost and a blow out is a blow out which is what happen to your team. in our 3 loses we average 39 points per game that we gave up when we lost and 21 per game points average we gave up throughout the season. As to where BA gave up an average of 24 points per game and in your loses you average giving up 48 points WOW and you say we need to go find a defense not only was our defense better than yours but so was our offense and team. #gofindanotherarguement

          • fb101

            Yes, that STELLAR defense that let the MIGHTY LANCERS back into the game. That same STELLAR defense that lost in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

            NO banners for Alemany. AGAIN.

  • warrior fan

    I have to agree with Aram, Amat needs to recognize that they have been in over their heads for more than a decade and counting. Think about it Amat has not been competitive in 17 years. the furthest they have made it is only to the second round. Whereas Coach Lou is at least making it to the second round and realizing that, that is as far as they will make it in the inland. Now with Amat well they dont even make it to the second round so imagine if they did, will their coach and fans realize that the pac5 is to much for them, or will they hold on to the fact that they won back in the days before cell phones had internet. Coach Lou is a stand up guy no shame at admitting when he’s in over his head. Recruiting will not help for Amat, why because no one wants to go play at a school that continues to lose every year in the first round. Now i can see Amat being somewhat competitive in the inland division maybe making it to the second round every year like CO but thats it. Now D3 or D4 would fit Amat perfect those teams such as Chaminade, Serra, Lompoc, or Mira Costa, Palmdale and etc….thats more of the level BA is actually on. The entire Serra league needs to be broken up leaving Alemany and ND in the pac5 and adding Hart, Valencia and maybe canyon country canyon. Its time to get rid of the im on big boy football level and not performing up there its time for Amat to realize they belong in a lower division.

    And Fred who cares about where calpreps had the Serra league when it came down to it CIF had the Serra league ranked 4th in the pac5 (i believe) i could be wrong but seriously its time for Amat to be placed where they can compete at.

    • SeaBlue

      Didn’t Bishop Amat beat Crespi? Didn’t Crespi beat Alemany? I think BA is right were they belong. That’s how the Serra is. Anyone can beat anyone.

    • SeaBlue

      So if BA doesn’t belong because of life in the Serra and the Pac-5, then CRESPI and LOYOLA sure as hell don’t belong either. And as good as Alemany has been the past 3 years, they still lost to Crespi.
      Again, that’s the Serra and because of your lack of understanding of the Serra (Combined with your extensive knowledge of Bishop Amat and Charter Oak as well as the rest of the SGV), I have NO DOUBT that you are just another Fishbowled Bishop Amat hater.
      You’re the same dude that was saying that Long Beach Poly sucked this year! hahahahahaa! When I read that the first time, it totally convinced me that YOU HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH ALEMANY AND KNOW NOTHING ABOUT THE PAC5.
      For real, dude…drop the mask. No one believes ur from or affiliated with Alemany.

      • warrior fan

        Another pathetic Amat fan. Here’s some fact Alemany Blew out Amat, (21) ND also Blew out Amat (21) both teams made it further than Amat has in so many years. Amat hasnt made it past the second round since last century. Alemany has only lost 1 Serra league game since being in the Serra. So all that “thats how the Serra is” no thats how it is for your team not mines. Also i dont think i used the words terrible but i did think Amat was going to win, i mean even coach Lara had doubts about his team. And lets not forget about this qoute

        “The Lancers were fortunate to get an at-large, and even more fortunate to draw Long Beach Poly in the first round. Let’s see if they take advantage of it”.

        Who’s that talking thats right Fred Robledo who also didnt think much of LBpoly. But like i said before, you pathetic Amat fans always say well look who we lost to their doing this or their doing that after saying the opposite before the whooping. Like i said Amat is in over there head and the best thing for them to do is drop divisions. Yeah we may had over looked Crespi and lost 1 Serra league game in 3 years but its only 1 and we never needed a coin toss or at large birth to get in the playoffs. Look loser this only came to the tabl because everyone was thinking it. Fact is Amat is a storied program but the story BEEN ENDED its over your no longer a threat to any top 10 pac5 team you barely play good in league against familiar opponents and playoffs well your playoff record speaks for itself. (TERRIBLE) Get wise before your program is completely grounded and drop divisions get some wins, then your school will attract talent like it use to then go back up to big boy football and try again. #bestthingforamattodo

    • jcaz

      Hey Warrior fan, I need some tickets for the rally you guys are having when you guys hang that banner up in your Gym later on this month.
      Oh, wait, you guys aren’t having a rally are you ?
      Oh wait, is that because you guys dont even have a banner to hang ? Not even one ???
      WTF ??? Warrior fan, why is that ?
      I mean, why is it that I can walk into Amats gym and see banner after banner (from a number of sports) hanging on those walls, and yet, not see anything even close to that over a Alemany ?
      I guess its somethng like penis envy ??? but more like, “BANNER ENVY?” LOL !

    • Valley Athletics

      Serra broken up leAving notre dame and alemany . Notre dame who has only made the playoffs this year. Amat has made it every year . Why would they drop a team that is in the middle of the PAC 5 .the marmonte has 7 worse teams and the Moore league only has long beach poly that can play in PAC 5 .the reality is that no team in the Serra will ever win a PAC 5 title. But , can u make it 8 team division with only the teams that can win .

  • Valley Athletics

    The fact is charter oak is top 8 team in the division . So they deserve to be in the inland .i don’t see upland and rancho complaining that they can’t beat corona centenial or vista .

  • Kind
    of fun watching Will Robinson #68, Amat class of ’03 protecting Drew
    Brees today from Right Tackle against the 49ers. Every time I hear Joe
    Buck say “good protection” I smile. Maybe there a few other Fish-Bowlers
    playing on Sundays. Update us. Maybe even an Alemany guy(since they are honorary Fish-Bowlers due to the Pasadena imports and Worrier Fans residence in the SGV)

    Also interesting watching the Pat Haden vignette on FoxSports during
    the Long Beach Poly victory on Friday. I’m sure the Cheech Marin piece
    filmed under the bleachers at Alemany is coming up soon. possibly
    Worrier Fan has some info on that.

    And about that “easy” draw Amat got by getting Long Beach Poly in the
    1st round – I wonder how Mission Viejo and St John Bosco feel about
    that now. Makes 3 of the last 5 years they’ve been knocked out by a
    finalist (first two by champions – we’ll see how next week turns out)

  • Lance R

    Yes Siree Joe A. Watching William Robinson play right tackle for the Saints yesterday was great. For a player like William to get another opportunity is nice. William just re-joined the team over the Thanksgiving Holiday and this was his first game this season. I think he made the most of it and contained #55 most of day. For a player that just got there and this being his first game and probably not in game shape yet William held his own. Hoping to see him right back there Thursday against the Falcons. A Amat guy of course….Have they done a segment on Babe Laufenberg yet?…….now that was a joke.

  • PAC 5

    With that type of thinking charter oak will never win a real step up game . He should not be crying for everyone to see . How is he supposed make his team believe in them selfs when he cries and says things like that .